Exploring Egypt

Youngsville students bring their lesson to life

Youngsville Elementary Middle School seventh grader Brianne Mitchell speaks with younger students about her project on the Egyptian pharaoh Khufu.

The Sphinx, Cleopatra and King Tut were on display in Youngsville this week.

Seventh-graders at Youngsville Elementary Middle School studied ancient Egypt over the last month.

As a culminating experience, each student had to pick and research a topic, prepare a tri-fold presentation, and educate fellow students on Wednesday. Wearing Egyptian garb and eye makeup was optional.

The students were unwilling to miss the event. Every student was in school for the final presentations, Teacher Stacey Robinault said. And most of them got into the spirit with robes, headgear, makeup,

The rest of the students in grades kindergarten through eight spent some time in the lobby checking out and talking about the presentations

“The Great Sphinx has a lion’s body and a human head,” Shea Walton said.

The structure along the west bank of the Nile is 240 feet long and 66 feet tall, but was covered in sand from the neck down until the area was excavated, she said.

The nose and lips are damaged and there are many theories about how that happened.

Time and erosion combine on one explanation, she said. Napoleon’s soldiers using the Sphinx’s face for cannon target practice is another.

“This project was fun,” Walton said. “It’s a great time. You learn a lot from it.”

She also enjoyed the chance to be the teacher.

“I believe it would be fun teaching children about your topic,” she said. “Teaching is a good way to help out. The children have fun and so do you.”

Many of the students — boys and girls — wore eye makeup.

“Egyptians wore eye makeup all the time,” Blake Hamm said.

Men and women in Egypt wore makeup to help protect them from the harsh environment. The designs also carried ritual significance.

“I was really excited when she said we were going to be learning about Egypt,” Elizabeth Kays said. “I’ve always been interested in learning about ancient Egypt. I’ve seen things on TV like pyramids, hieroglyphics, and pharaohs.”

“Today was pretty exciting with all the children coming around, listening to me, and asking me questions,” Kays said.